Metroid did little to guide gamers across its vast alien landscape, a design that would come to define an entire sub-genre of gaming. It also featured one of Nintendo's most memorable villains: the squishy, iconic Mother Brain.
The OG action-RPG, The Legend of Zelda offered up a sprawling, hugely explorable world that felt, at the time, like a portal into the Lord of the Rings books. With an iconic character, a terrific open-world and addictive gameplay, Zelda will always rank among Nintendo's elite.
Super Mario Bros. 3 offered up a unique combination of elements, criss-crossing genres in an insanely satisfying way. With a top-down, RPG feel, the colorful, 2D platforming of the original, and a slew of exceptionally fun power-ups, the third chapter was hands-down the best of the original series.